Batman 66 #2 Review

Batman 66 While the Trinity War rages in the New 52 and everyone's trying to kill one another in Injustice, somewhere in a far off corner of the DC Universe is Batman '66 dancing the Batusi and smiling. Long before you finish reading Batman '66 #2 you'll be smiling too - though, disappointingly, Batman doesn't dance in this issue. In the first of two stories in this issue, Penguin has blockaded Gotham Harbour with a giant iceberg and gotten it classed as his own sovereign nation thus making him - that's right - Emperor Penguin! But how does the iceberg remain solid in the middle of summer? Enter Mr Freeze! But with Batman down for the count, it's up to the Boy Wonder to save the day. Holy popsicle sticks, Batman! In the second story, a night out for Bruce and Kathy goes terribly wrong when Chandell and his crooning partner Lorelei Circe attempt a daring heist on the club's patrons! If you're new to this title, Batman '66 is a series of new stories inspired by the 1960s Adam West Batman TV show with the same actors, as they appeared in the 60s, playing their iconic roles once again. Batman is of course pure West, Burt Ward is Robin, Burgess Meredith is Penguin, Otto Preminger is Mr Freeze, and, most bizarrely of all (but it happened), Liberace is Chandell! The comics retain the quirks of the beloved TV show like the captions accompanying the fighting - ZABAM! KA-KICK! KA-RAAM! - and the twirling Bat symbol for scene transitions. The stories keep to the TV series' sense of silliness and are enormously fun to read. Where else can you read about Penguin holding Gotham hostage with an iceberg or see Liberace playing piano in a Batman story? There's so much to love about this comic with writer Jeff Parker hitting all the right notes with his script, getting the characters' voices and the style of the story just right. And the finale of the first story where Robin turns to the reader with a smile and says "Gosh!"? I love this comic. Ty Templeton and Jonathan Case's artwork in both stories are utterly brilliant with Case drawing the best panel in the issue with Batman on a surfboard wearing surfer shorts! Even Mike Allred's cover is gorgeous - I'd really like to see him draw a full story in this series, he is such a super talent. A lot of excellent Bat gadgets make an appearance too. There's a Bat boat, a Bat sub €“ with robotic cutting arms, coincidentally fitting in with the plot €“ while Penguin has his Penguin-sub, and an elaborate ice-kingdom. That's what's so great about this series: it's completely unrestrained from budgetary demands. If Parker can imagine it, Templeton and Case can draw it, so we get stories that feel like Batman 66 but could never have been pulled off on the TV show. This comic is rated E for Everyone, and everyone should read it. Batman 66 is definitely one of the best things DC have done this year - it's such a genius concept, it's amazing we're only just seeing this now instead of years ago! If you miss the gentler days of old when Batman was the Caped Crusader instead of the modern dark and gritty Dark Knight, Batman '66 is for you, old chum. More Batman fun promised next month - same Bat time, same Bat channel! Batman '66 #2 by Jeff Parker, Ty Templeton and Jonathan Case is out now
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